TMZ Wins Again: Media Lessons in Lindsay Lohan and Her ‘Regrettably’ Failed Drug Test


And now, for three things we already knew: 1) Lindsay Lohan failed a drug test last week. You know already because TMZ reported it on Friday afternoon, exclusively, though the D.A. said they had not yet been notified of the results of the test. Which brings us to two more things we already knew, these more meta and media-oriented, but exemplified, yet again, in the case of Lindsay Lohan’s failed drug test:

2) TMZ is a force in the celebrity news and gossip world. It’s been said before and also way before that. But every time they get something right and first, with second place nowhere in sight, it becomes more clear that they are becoming the gold standard for quick, breaking and, gasp, accurate celebrity news. The competition, meanwhile, is foundering and in this case, wrong. For instance: “But Lohan told Friday: ‘I’m fine.’ Of TMZ’s report? ‘They’re all nuts,’ she claims.” And then she took to her Twitter to admit that her weak denial was, by omission, a lie, bringing us to the third thing we already knew…

3) Twitter has changed the way celebrities communicate with their public. Instead of needing celebrity mouthpieces like US or People, Lohan came clean about not coming clean to her 1,180,557 followers. She wrote, in pieces:

Regrettably, I did in fact fail my most recent drug test and if I am asked, I am prepared to appear before judge Fox next week as a result. Substance abuse is a disease, which unfortunately doesn’t go away over night. I am working hard to overcome it and am taking positive steps forward every day. I am testing every single day and doing what I must do to prevent any mishaps in the future. This was certainly a setback for me but I am taking responsibility for my actions and I’m prepared to face the consequences. I am so thankful for the support of my fans, loved ones and immediate family, who understand that i am trying hard, but also that I am a work in progress, just as anyone else. I am keeping my faith, and I am hopeful….Thank you all!!!

Reading it in that form, it could be any press release sent to the traditional media. But in reverse chronological order, on her Twitter feed, it’s direct communication, with no middleman. In other words, the lessons of Kanye West.

Lindsay could face up to 30 days in jail.